Street Life — The Us And The Them

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Maybe it's a sign of the times, but I have often thought how would I manage if I where to become homeless. I have this stupid romantic notion that I could hack it living a life on the streets.

 

Street life ......

I heard about a production company filming in town this week. I read that the movie is a story about a future world where two groups of people live side by side yet refuse to acknowledge that the others are there. Hang on I thought, is this a future world or is this what's happening now.

I couldn't help but think after looking around at the growing underclass of homeless and beggars that fill the city centre. that maybe theres more to this film than you would at first think. The idea of two worlds living alongside one and other and one ignoring the other isn't fantasy or dystopian or the future, it's how we are living already. We have our two societies the 'Them' and the 'Us'

Maybe it's a sign of the times, but I have often thought how would I manage if I where to become one of 'them' and become homeless. I have this stupid romantic notion that I could hack it living a life on the streets. I frequently spot a doorway or a tucked away spot, that I think might make a good place to bed down for the night.

Where I got this stupid obsession from I don't know. I've Probably been brainwashed by all those reality TV shows that make out that survival is easy if you know what to do. I'm no different to a lot of people who are so arrogant they believe that forced to live by their wits, they could probably do a better job than a lot of the amateurs they see parked in doorways and outside shops.

Know it all's like to tell us that begging is a license to print money, and everyone who is doing it is a 'wrong-un' They like to propagate the idea that there is now a professional class of weekend beggars who are earning a small fortune from playing on the sympathy of others.

I blame The Charlie Chaplin image of the tramp who lived by his wits and the kindness of strangers. for people having the wrong idea about life on the streets. This cozy Hollywood fiction has a lot to answer for. Their is also the myth of the happy traveller. The king of the road, who lives by the Moto 'where ever I lay my hat that's my home'. The reality of a living life on the streets is where ever you lay your hat your likely to get beaten, spat on, and offered drugs as a way out. It's a harsh and frightening reality that being homeless is not a life choice.

So how many nights could you live in a doorway. Some people would say they could do it for a night. A few tough nuts might even say two but what then? You don't like it so you go home to your nice warm bed. But What if going home isn't an option? What if living rough had no end date?

They say ignorance is bliss and the majority of people choose to live life that way. They choose to ignore what going on all around them, but the 'us and the them' is real. We just don't like to be reminded that they are there. How many will watch the finished film and put two and two together.

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There's more where that came from!